Australian Olympic Team Is Still Planning On Heading To Japan For Tokyo Games
The Australian Olympic Committee (AOC) has revealed it is still planning to head to Japan for the 2020 Tokyo Games.
That's despite a directive from the Prime Minister not to leave Australia under any circumstances.
The coronavirus pandemic has caused the Australian government to introduce a Level Four Travel Ban, which advises Australians against travelling to any country in the world.
But that isn't stopping the AOC, with chief executive Matt Carroll and Chef de Mission Ian Chesterman saying the plan was to still travel in July.
"The AOC does not live in a bubble," Mr Carroll said. "There is a global health crisis. We recognise that people are suffering, people are sick, people are losing their jobs, businesses are struggling, amid enormous community uncertainty.
"Things are changing every day.
"The IOC, like all of us, are basing their planning on what they know and are receiving the best advice."
"The IOC set out two overriding principles for staging the games and guiding their decision making. To protect the health of everyone involved and support the containment of the virus, [and] to safeguard the interests of the athletes, and of Olympic sport.
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"These principles are guiding the IOC's decision making over the next four months."
He was supported by Chef de Mission Ian Chesterman, who added that many athletes would be devastated if the Games were called off.
"I always try to look through the eyes of athletes, athletes who worked for four years, eight years, 12 and more in some cases, and they want their Olympic moment," he said.
"For many this will be their only opportunity to be at an Olympic Games.
"If everybody is planning for the Games, we must plan for the Games as well, because that's our obligation to the athletes.
"We know the athletes also want to be there. We need to be able to deliver them safely and get them home safe safely."
"I'm the one who's been at the coalface with athletes over the last month. I've been around the country and announcing athletes, announced whether they will be going to the Games.
"I continually get feedback that they want to go to the Games.
"I've not had any question directly from athletes saying that, asking me about the impact of the coronavirus and that's why we've been on the front foot to continually inform them."
The situation is constantly unfolding and until there is an official word from the Olympic organisers, it seems like the Aussie team is hellbent on going to Tokyo.
Featured Image Credit: PA